I’ve been craving chicken all this month, I don’t know why but it’s such an intense craving that I had to make not one but two separate chicken dishes! Each is so different from the other that at least one of these recipes is sure to satisfy even the fussiest eater! Plus if you are anything like me and truly believe that variety is the spice of life, then you will surely appreciate this culinary journey through India and Spain!
A lot of people I have met and know are super intimidated by Indian cooking. They love the curry but want it in a hurry! But with a little more effort than ordering take out might need, you can have your curry and eat it too! Trust me folks! You won’t regret trying this recipe out! Don’t be intimidated by the number of ingredients!
Karahi Chicken in a Spinach Tomato curry
2 boneless/skinless chicken breasts (you can use chicken with the bone in, or however you prefer it)
4-5 tbsp of vegetable oil (Olive oil will do as well)
1 bunch of spinach
1 large can of tomato puree
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
2 tsp minced ginger
½ onion finely shopped
½ red bell pepper thinly sliced
1 Japaleno thinly sliced (you can chose to leave this out if you don’t like your curry very spicy)
A few strands of saffron – very little goes a long way! (Optional) (Dilute the saffron in 1-2 tsp of warm water)
1 cup of water
3-4 tbsp of heavy cream (Optional)
2 tsp Turmeric
3 tsp red chili powder
3 tsp cumin powder
4-5 tsp of curry powder (you can use garam masala as a substitute)
Salt and pepper to taste
For the curry:
1. Start by sautéing the onions, chopped garlic, ginger, jalapeno and red peppers in a heated wok, in vegetable oil; for 7-10 minutes or until they start to caramelize.
2. Once the onion mixture is caramelized; add all the listed spices and continue to sauté for another 10 minutes. You are now cooking the spices so they release their flavor. (At this point you may need to add a few extra tbsp of oil)
3. In the mean time, blanch the spinach in hot water for a 3-5 minutes and drain. Then transfer the spinach to a food processor and pulse until it’s pureed.
4. Now add the pureed spinach and tomato to the cooking spices and mix well. Lower the heat, cover the wok and let it simmer for 15 minutes (stir occasionally so the mixture does not stick)
5. Now begin adding the cup of water, a little at a time, constantly incorporating the water before adding more. You will now see texture and color of curry developing!
Cover the wok again and let the curry simmer for another 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare the chicken. Cut the chicken breasts into bite sizes pieces.
1. In a separate skillet, heat some oil and sauté the chicken pieces for 5 minutes (you don’t want to cook them through but don’t want them to be completely raw either!)
2. Add the chicken into the curry and let it simmer until the chicken is completely cooked (approximately 10-15 minutes).
3. Finish the curry off by adding the saffron and the heavy cream; mix to incorporate.
Serve with simple steamed Basmati rice or Naan, or just even slices of white bread AND an ice cold Beer! Enjoy!!
Moving on to Mexico and my love for all things Adobo, I present to you Adobo rubbed Roast Chicken and Roasted Vegetables with a Caramelized Onions and Mushroom sauce
2 half chicken breasts (with skin and bone)
5-6 medium sized potatoes – chopped into quarters
4 carrots – cut in 1-2 inch pieces
1 large onion – chopped the same size as the potatoes
3-4 cloves of garlic – roughly chopped
2-3 tbsp of sage, rosemary and thyme – finely chopped
½ stick of butter
½ stick of butter
2 tsp of Olive Oil
1 large lemon
2 packets of Sazon seasoning
2-3 tsp of Adobo spice
2 tsp red chili powder and cumin powder
salt and pepper to taste
For the Sauce
1 large onion – thinly sliced
Quarter pound of mushrooms – thinly sliced
2 tsp of all-purpose flour
2-3 tsp of Olive oil or butter
1.5 cups of chicken stock
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tsp of chopped chives
This dish is cooked family style so you want to roast your chicken and vegetables together on a large baking tray.
- Prepare the chicken first by seasoning it with salt, pepper and lemon juice. Remember to season it well, getting into any cavities as well.
- Layer the chopped vegetables around the chicken and season them with some salt and pepper too.
- Now add the Sazon, Adobo spice and red chili and cumin powder and coat all the vegetables and the chicken very well.
- Finally sprinkle all the herbs and mix well.
- Add pea size pieces of the butter by spreading them evenly over the entire tray of chicken and vegetables and pour the olive oil to finish.
Roast the chicken and vegetables in a 425-degree oven for at least 60-70 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. The juices from the chicken mixed with the spices will caramelize and flavor the vegetables as well!
Remove from the oven and let the chicken rest before you cut and serve it.
For the sauce
- In a skillet add the olive oil (or butter) until it is heated.
- Now add the onions and salt and pepper and sauté until they are absolutely brown and caramelized.
- Next add the mushrooms and cook until they brown.
- Now sprinkle the all-purpose flour 1 tsp at a time and incorporate it well.
- Finally begin adding the chicken stock, a little a time while consistently stirring and incorporating the liquid. If you feel you need a bit more stock feel free to add more.
As the sauce simmers it will thicken some more. Finally, when it reaches the consistency of gravy, sprinkle the chopped chives over it and serve with your portion of Adobo rubbed Roast Chicken and Roasted Vegetables!!
This was a super easy recipe to make as it does not call for any complicated ingredients and can be made using all of two utensils! Now go....eat more chikin!!!